Prominent Palestinian scholar, author and academic, Dr. Abdallah Ma’rouf, is currently in Cape Town conducting a series of educational workshops focusing on the history of the Palestinian issue, as well as that of the iconic Masjid al-Aqsa. He is being hosted by the Muslim Student Association (MSA), in association with the Youth for Al-Aqsa group.
Dr Ma’rouf, who holds a PHD in Islamic Jerusalem Studies, is considered a leading authority on the history of the city of Al Quds in Palestine. The workshops, titled “Ambassador for Al-Quds”, will look to bring about an understanding amongst the cities youth, to what brought about the current crisis in the troubled region.
Addressing the conflict on VOC’s Breakfast Beat, Dr Ma’rouf was particularly critical of the Zionist argument of anti-Semitism, which he said was being loosely thrown about to describe anyone in opposition to the state of Israel. He said the term had taken on a completely new meaning in recent years, going from a word used to describe the atrocities of World War II, to a term used to fuel Zionist propaganda.
He questioned why the term was being used in a negative manner against a Palestinian population, who were in fact Semitic themselves. He simplified it to the Zionist movement’s attempts to propagate the idea of oppression against them.
“How can I call the people who are of non-Semitic origin, who are coming from outside this region, Semitic? This whilst the original people of the land are regarded as non-Semitics and anti-Semitic,” he said.
With much of the last months focus having been directed at the constant shelling of Gaza, Dr Ma’rouf noted the current situation in the West Bank was no better, with Israeli forces doing their best to prevent Muslims from entering, or praying within Masjid al-Aqsa itself. Even more shocking were the attempts to divide the mosque between Muslims and Jews.
“That is the most appalling issue here. There are a lot of clashes happening throughout these last few days after Ramadan, and that is because the Israeli’s are trying at all times to host festivals, and events related to the Hebrew calendar within the mosque,” he asserted.
Since his arrival, Dr Mara’ouf has been in high demand. To hear him speak on this important issue, see his schedule below:
Thursday 7 August
18:30 Public Lecture at Masjdul Jumuah, Westridge Mitchells Plain: “Al Aqsa – Gateway to the heavens”
Friday 8th August:
Jumuah lecture at Zeenatul-Islam Musjid, District 6: “Al-Aqsa the barometer of the Ummah”
6:30pm Public lecture Masjid Al-Quds, Gatesville: “The liberation of Musjid Al-Aqsa as a strategy of Rasoolullah (SAW)”
Saturday 9th August:
9:00am Ambassadors for Al-Quds (break between 10am and 2pm to attend the Mass March for Gaza in town)
-2:00pm – 8:00pm Continuation of Ambassadors programme
Sunday 10th August:
9:30am – 5:00pm Ambassadors for Al-Quds Day 2
Seating for the Ambassadors workshop islimited, and prior registration is essential to secure a place.
For more information on the itinerary or to register for the workshop, please call/sms 076 764 5464. VOC (Mubeen Banderker)